Gen Z and Millennial consumers make up the biggest portion of the global cosmetics market and are more likely to be heavy buyers (purchasing at least 10 products a year). We look at how three new-to-market brands have dominated the beauty-scene in the past month and how they are resonating so deeply with this consumer.
1) KKW Beauty - The Social Brand
Queen of social, Kim Kardashian West, recently followed in her little sister, Kylie Jenner’s, footsteps by launching KKW Beauty.
In an Instagram era, where beauty trends are hatched on social media, brands can become ‘insta-famous’ before they even launch. Sold nearly entirely on 'wrist swatches’, Kim used Instagram Stories and Snapchat to showcase her products, harnessing the power of her own social empire.
Kim also collaborated with beauty bloggers, YouTubers, and social influencers pre-launch, garnering as much desire and digital exposure as possible.
Kim’s online only collection sold out in less than 3 hours, reportedly earning her a whopping £11million ($14.4million) for her first release.
The pull of celebrity can never be underestimated, but to her credit, the super on-trend fleshy pink, paired-back packaging proved to be a big hitter with consumers - aesthetically pleasing, Instagram gold.
2) ASOS Face & Body - The Affordable Brand
For many, ASOS is a one-stop shop for clothing, accessories, shoes, beauty products and more. The online retailer carries a wide variety of brands, both pricey and affordable. Although they already carry countless cosmetic lines, they are taking a slice of the teen and millennial beauty industry with their super affordable own label - ASOS Face & Beauty.
Their mantra? ‘There are no rules or limits, just endless ways to be you’. The gender-neutral campaign includes both men and women wearing a selection of the 46 products available, designed to empower and inspire all beauty buffs to use their face and body as a canvas to experiment and play.
What makes them different to other make-up brands? Well, for a start, all their super pigmented products retail at £10 or under - a big winner with the teen market. Secondly, by selling through the ASOS platform, they have a ready-made consumer base and next day facility unrivalled by any other online retailer.
3) Fenty Beauty - The Inclusive Brand
Described as a ‘new generation of beauty’, Rihanna launched ‘Fenty Beauty’ this month, exclusively through Sephora and Harvey Nichols.
It almost seems impossible that another celebrity beauty brand could rival KKW Beauty, however Fenty beauty is set to overtake both Kim and her sister Kylie in sales by the end of the year.
What makes Fenty Beauty so appealing? Firstly, Rihanna has won praise for her 40 strong foundation line, from the lightest shade on the market created for albino skin tones, to shades matched to the very darkest tones - catering for a hugely under serviced population of men and women.
Secondly, having a place in the physical world has certainly helped Rihanna make such big waves - where consumers have more control and opportunities to play, try and learn before they buy.
Brands such as Sephora and Ulta have announced plans for physical store expansion, whilst web-native brands such as Credo and Birchbox are continuing to set up shopping destinations IRL.
Estee Lauder have been taking note in recent years, introducing 'The Estee Edit' to connect with a younger, more experimental consumer through their Carnaby Street pop-up and recruiting ambassadors such as Kendall Jenner. A smart approach to bringing the fun factor back into the luxury category.
For an industry projected to rise to $429.8 billion by 2022, bending to Gen Z and Millennial whims isn’t just a good idea - it’s crucial.
SEEN is compiled by LOVE’s Head of Culture, Kat Towers. Want to say hello, ask questions or challenge her cultural knowledge then get in touch firstname.lastname@example.org.